This September, the Moody College of Communication’s Internal Transfer Policy will no longer consider applicant’s supplemental materials. By removing the holistic portion of applications, Moody overlooks the aspects of a candidate that make them diverse and instead relies only on GPA to encapsulate who an applicant is.
I was an internal transfer to the McCombs School of Business for the fall. Currently, the McCombs School of Business and other schools, such as the Cockrell School of Engineering, base their admission of internal transfers primarily on GPA. After attending information sessions held by McCombs about the internal transfer process, I left with the profound sense that to McCombs, we were not really students, but instead numbers on an Excel spreadsheet. Our experiences, our life goals, the things we cared about did not matter. We were just GPAs.
Under Moody’s new policy, students attempting to internally transfer into the college will be judged on three primary qualifications: their GPA, the amount of hours they have taken and how they perform in classes in the major they intend to transfer into. McCombs and Cockrell use the same system. Aspects such as resumes and essays are not taken into consideration. Only our grades matter.
Theoretically, someone applying for the advertising program with an internship and extracurriculars in advertising as well as a 3.7 GPA, could lose their spot in the program to someone with no advertising experience or extracurriculars with a 3.71 GPA if they received the same grade in the prerequisite courses. By judging applicants non-holistically, Moody could miss out on applicants who truly care about the major they have applied for.
To see Moody, the other school I am enrolled in, do the same to their internal transfers frustrates me. James Hope, a junior linguistics major attempting to transfer into radio-television-film this semester in Moody, finds the new policy a “little ridiculous.” He worries that for someone like him, who worked hard to earn experience in RTF by interning at Austin Public Access Television for Austin Public for Austin Film Society and through heavy involvement in Texas Student Television, that the new policy could “give someone with no experience a leg up.”
For a school with majors predominantly involving skills that appear outside of grades, Hope’s viewpoint is logical. You cannot tell someone’s chances of success in a creative major like RTF based on their GPA alone, and even though Moody considers one’s grades in classes for their intended major, one mediocre grade in an unrelated class could destroy someone’s chances. Since Moody has not posted average GPAs for admitted internal transfers, internal transfers cannot truly know their odds of getting in.
One student attempting to internally transfer into Moody, who chose to remain anonymous, stated that “there are so many factors to define passion for something,” and that Moody “has a responsibility to review each person” applying to their school. Even if they get rejected, they still intend to participate in the field of their choice even without getting a degree. “It’ll suck, but it’s what I want to do,” they said.
This year, UT went before the Supreme Court to protect their use of Affirmative Action in their holistic admission process for freshmen and continue to use it to admit students. So why do we allow UT schools to review internal transfers non-holistically? Whether it be for Moody, McCombs or Cockrell, there will not be an effective internal transfer policy until schools treat its applicants as diverse individuals with widely varying experiences, not simply a number on a transcript.
Treuthardt is a business and journalism sophomore from Allen.